Hello, it's been a long time, So it's almost the end of the year so it's time for a Paws-on special, which will include a bunch of the games i played this year, some great games, and some not so great. I'll just make a quick overview of what i think on each games, i may make a bigger preview of some of them later, if peoples are interested into it.
The list (Alphabetical order): *Blacklight: Retribution *Endless Space *Faster Than Light *Guild Wars 2 *Natural Selection 2 *Planetside 2 *War of the Roses *XCOM: Enemy Unknown
Quick recap at the end of this post for the lazy one.
BLACKLIGHT: RETRIBUTION PC, Free to Play, Shooter; Multiplayers Probably my "Surprise of the year"; i usually despise Free-to-play shooters, because 90% of Free-to-play are already bad, and F2P Shooters are the worst of them. But Blacklight managed to avoid the usual "Pay-to-win", "Hard grind", and "Stupid leased only weapons" issues which is latent in F2P shooters. It's not perfect, as peoples can pay to have access to some weapons parts early, but the game is oddly well balanced, so it's not a big trouble (Except for one or two equipment) There is a great numbers of guns since you can make them yourself, part by part (From magazine to muzzle) and for beginners, there is pre-made, cheap weapons. The game looks really good, and the style fit the game really well. The guns sound nice, and they react well. You can play in a lot of different way: Sniper, Machine gunner, light assault, even melee. There is a good amount of game modes, Deathmatch, Capture the Flag, lot of classics, and some more original one. Overall, it's one of the best free-to-play game of the year, and even better than some pay-to-play games.
I even spent a few euros in it; it's a rare thing, as i never spend money in free-to-play usually (Mostly because they are 'Meh' at best) Linked video: http://youtu.be/F-FpduXstLE
ENDLESS SPACE PC, 4X (Explore, Expand, Exploit, Exterminate); Singleplayer, Multiplayers I saw this game on steam, and gave it a shot; looked nice, and had some back memories of Star Wars: Rebellion. It looks nice, the music is really nice too, and it works well. The game have no campaign, but it doesn't need one. It's a decent 4X, even if some things are not pushed enough, and the space combat is not that strategic: You choose one order per phase, Long, Medium and close range, you don't tell where to go, or if you want to shoot down one specific ship. But the way you give orders is interesting, as you use some sort of "Cards", which can be countered, etc... There is plenty of research and buildings to do, some of them more appealing to some sort of players than others. You can choose between pre-made factions/races, or make your own. All of them are different in some ways, from look to gameplay. You can also choose your ships weapons and equipments, so you can customize your way to play from top to bottom. The game is often updated, depending on the community choices, and you can play in multiplayer too.
In the end the game is worth the price, even more if you play with friends. Also, as we are in a Furry website, there is a Feathery-awesome-looking race. Just so you know. Linked Video: http://youtu.be/Hw87CXwjpKI
FASTER THAN LIGHT (FTL) PC, Roguelike; Singleplayer A nice "little" game, where you will be the commander of a ship, and you'll have to take care of what you are doing; because if your ship explode, it's done, game over, no loading back. You'll have to fight enemies, such as pirates, rebels, and aliens; you will use weapons, blaster, mines, and missiles; you will uses equipments, such as drones and cloaking devices; you will go through asteroids fields, or close to sun. Raid enemy vessel. Buy and sell stuff. Repair critically damaged equipment. Try to extinguish fires, spreading into your ship. Recruit new crew members. And probably blow up a few times. And all of this randomly. The game generate a new... "world" every game, so you'll never know what you will encounter, and there is lots to do, even some sort of secrets to find. You will start with a basic, well balanced ship, but you will unlocks ships as you play, with different gameplay. Each races have different abilities (Or none at all, for humans) so choose your crew members as you see fit. It's one of those "little" game, like The Binding of Isaac, where you will "Just play a quick one" and end up playing for hours. Trying again, and again.
GUILD WARS 2 PC, MMORPG; Multiplayers (Orly?) I talked a lot about it during beta, and it's a great game. Looks amazing, play well, sounds great, you get it, i already said all of that. Guild Wars 2 change some stuff of the usual MMORPG, such as no hard grind, and less repetitive quests (It's still a bit though) and easier to find. Most classes are well balanced, but there is still some work to do. Each races have their own stories, and looks. Most Armors and Weapons looks nice, so you'll quickly find the one you want. Dungeons are still under balancing, but most of them are fun and rewarding. And the overall story is quite nice. There is two sort of PvP: Structured PvP, where two teams are fighting to captures objectives and gain the most points. Everyone have the same level, and equipments (Depending on classes, of courses) so nothing to complain about. Then there is Worlds vs Worlds PvP, where 3 servers are put against each others, and fight for bonus for their own homeworld, you'll have castle to defend or attack, you'll use catapult and trebuchet, and will follow commanders orders to achieve victory... or death. Both PvP are fun, but a bit repetitive; they will add new game modes for sPvP, and i hope they'll spice WvW a bit. Even if most of the big things are players dependent in WvW. You will only need to pay once, no subscription fee, and the Gem store is not pay-to-win at all (It's only cosmetic, and boosters, such as faster Experiences) And as a MMO, the game is updated often, with events and new stuff.
NATURAL SELECTION 2 PC, Shooter, Strategy; Multiplayers This is a bit different than the others games, as i'm a big fan of the first Natural Selection (Which was a mod for Half-life 1) and for this one, no difference: Big fan. Made by a "little indie team" the game is as good as a "big company game": It looks really good on max settings, and is well optimized (Even low end computer can run it) the gameplay is solid, and they improved some stuff from the first one. You can either play as a Frontiersmen (Marines) and shoot stuff with Assault rifles, shotguns, or burn stuff with a bloody flamethrower. You can also use Jetpacks or Exo-armor to be part of the havoc team stomping into the Aliens base. You can also be the Commander, with the RTS view, to deploy building, research upgrades, and drop medikits and equipments to your marines (Which are actual players) OR, you can play as the Kharaa (Aliens) chomp guys, stalk peoples, gas marines, slash soldiers, explode buildings. You can also be the Alien Commander, which is a bit like the Marines commanders basically, but the Tech tree is completely different, and the way to expand and build is different too. The game is completely asymmetric, yet it's quite balanced. Both sides are fun to play and really different (I personally love the Kharaa more) And Kharaa have 5 different type of aliens, all different, and you will probably love one more than the others (The Lerk is awesome and an absolute pain in the *ss for marines) The games is old school, no unlocks, no aim down sight, no recoil, no modern shooter thing. Just run and gun (Or chomp) it's fun too. Remember what it was back in the days. Also the game have a strong Mod community, there is already a lot of mods to download in the Steam Workshop. From new game modes like COMBAT, or stupid-but-awesome thing such as MANLY MOUSTACHE MARINES.
At the actual price, it's a bargain; you will play this game often, modded or not. If you like shooters, and Old school game, it's a must buy. Also, Furry website once again: Chomping stuff and running on all fours. That may interest some peoples. Linked Video: http://youtu.be/hp-4iaKXP68 http://youtu.be/Z0-lqBEwCOc
PLANETSIDE 2 PC, MMO Shooter, Multiplayers (No, Really) That's a tricky one. It's like two teams made the game, the amazing one, who bring the fun; and the greedy one, which will kick your money out directly from your balls. I'll start with the good stuff: It looks good, it's big, it blow up everywhere, it's shooting all around, it's chaotic, it's good chaos, it's a digital-war for short. The vehicles gameplay is good, you can use Ground vehicles or Air fighters (Maybe Sea units in the future) you may end up in the middle of a big fight, with hundreds of players shooting at each others, trying to capture a building, or just because they encountered each others on the roads. There is a good amount of classes, from Sniper to Heavy, with a special one, the MAX, a heavy armor unit. And a good amount of guns too, which can be customized. You can also customize your character by buying (With real money) some cosmetic. There is three factions, the Terran republic (TR), the Vanu Sovereignty (VS) and the New Conglomerate (NC), which are a bit different from each others, lore and gameplay (TR Tank shoot fast, the VS tank can move sideways, and the NC tank hit freacking hard) So yeah, the core of the game is good. but... The game have some down sides: The game is not well optimized yet, AMD players can have a hard time. The Hard grind is there, it's almost ridiculous how hard it is to unlock one weapon. Which lead in some sort of "Pay-to-win" since it's easier to buy them (Even if you can unlock every weapon without paying), than unlock them. But the game is also sh*t expensive, a gun is worth 6 or 7 euro. That's seriously crazy banana. There is some imbalance too, but they are working on it, so that's "minor".
In the end, and as it is, the game is not worth spending money, mostly because someone was too greedy at Sony online Entertainment and need some back slap; but play it, the core of the game is fun, you can enjoy the game for free. Linked Video: http://youtu.be/CHN9CdBqSYM (Terran Republic, blablablah goggled Fascist speech, blablablah) http://youtu.be/JkTnvST9Teg (Vanu Sovereignty, some Futuristic Nerds propaganda) http://youtu.be/ErA4jNfVSIM (New Conglomerate, finally something worthy; The faction i did choose, obviously)
WAR OF THE ROSES PC, Third Person... Slasher?; Multiplayers Peoples often compare it to Chivalry, personally i find War of the Roses less Blood & Gore oriented, more gentleman-like, i'd say ("It doesn't make sense!"). Which is why i went for this one instead of Chivalry. Looked promising, a more skill oriented medieval game than usual, with a realistic look, and some nice armor and weapons. Too bad it fell a bit short on a few things. The armors looks nice, and the customization is good too. The Horses fights are fun, even if hard. And the Archery part of the game is good and rewarding. Duel are oddly fun, and somewhat hard to master. But big melee is too chaotic. The game have great hitboxes though, and a well done piercing, and armor system. Which can be weird at first, but you'll get the hang of it. But the game lacks game modes, and a more polished melee combat, as it can be frustrating sometimes. Also there is imbalances between weapons. You'll get some fun with it, mostly with friends, but you'll also find some things really stupid (Such as the execute/revive feature) or outrageous (Spike spammer)
So, it's not worth the price actually, with an update who adds more game modes and fix the imbalance, that will be better. Linked Video: http://youtu.be/peG7-GKRcWE
XCOM: ENEMY UNKNOWN PC, Turn Based Strategy; SinglePlayer, Multiplayers I never played an XCOM game before, so i wasn't sure what to expect from it. But it's actually pretty good. Quite simple, a bit of strategy, some customization, decent story, and a bunch of aliens. The game looks nice, not awesome, but nice. It runs well, since it use the Unreal engine it's not really surprising. And the gameplay is good. There is a few bugs though. And the game can be a bit hard at first, but you quickly find your mark. The game have an IRONMAN mode, where you can't use the regular saves (The game only save when you quit) so every decisions is definitive. You can upgrade your base, with various rooms, Generator, Satellites, Laboratory, etc... And you have the Strategic part, when your soldiers hit the field. There is multiples missions: Rescue, Extraction, basic "shoot everything & comeback"... With a cover system, and RPG elements, like stats such as Accuracy, or Will. There is a bunch of different guns, Sniper, Machine guns, Assault rifle, etc... And their upgraded friends (Plasma Rifles, Laser machine gun...) and same thing for armor. Your soldiers will gain levels, and will randomly choose a Class (Sniper, Assault, Support, etc) and everytime you launch a mission you will be able to choose 4 to 6 soldiers to participate in the mission. The game have a few cutscenes, to set the story and mood. They are quite good actually, and you can pass them if you want (It's not the case in all games, so it's worth noting).
The game is quite good, maybe a bit short, but it's worth the money as you'll probably come back to it every once in a while at least; but the paid DLCs sure could be more consistent to justify the price. Linked video: http://youtu.be/UNyhyzjYCks
A quick Recap:
*Blacklight: Retribution Great F2P FPS, must have.
*Endless Space Good 4X, worth a shot.
*Faster Than Light Good Roguelike, go for it.
*Guild Wars 2 Great MMORPG, must have.
*Natural Selection 2 Great FPS/RTS, must have.
*Planetside 2 Decent MMOFPS, try it.
*War of the Roses Decent Action game, need fixes.
*XCOM: Enemy Unknown Good Turn Based, worth a shot.
So, that's it for now. Quite a bunch of games to consider for this end of the year. I didn't put Assassin's Creed 3, or Borderlands 2, because i haven't bought them (Yet?) even if i'd like too. And finally, enjoy Christmas (Yeah, i said CHRISTMAS, deal with it) and happy new year.